Ohio Doc Treating Long-Term COVID Patients Hopeful But Concerned

Mar 21, 2021

Clinics to help people with long-lasting COVID symptoms are being created all over the country, including two in Cleveland.

Nearly 850,000 Ohioans are confirmed to have been infected with coronavirus since March 9, 2020. And some have reported symptoms that just won't go away and affect their daily lives.

Dr. Kristin Englund runs the Cleveland Clinic’s reCOVer outpatient clinic, which has treated around 120 patients.

Englund says patients can suffer breathing problems, fatigue, cognitive disorders, and even rashes and hair loss - serious and long-lasting enough that they seek medical help. Yet Englund said almost two-thirds of them were not hospitalized for COVID.

And in an interview for "The State of Ohio", she said some are still apparently having trouble taking the coronavirus pandemic seriously.

“I would literally be upstairs seeing patients struggling for life on a vent, and then come downstairs and hear somebody telling me that they don’t believe that virus is real," Englund said.

Doctors and front-line health care workers have reported throughout the pandemic have reported seeing patients who deny the virus is real, despite the deaths of more than 541,000 Americans and more than 18,000 Ohioans.

Englund said vaccines have provided her with hope, because it’s important to keep the virus from spreading and so it doesn’t mutate into vaccine and treatment resistant variants. But she's still worried.

Another long-haul COVID clinic is operating at MetroHealth in Cleveland.